Info can be found at:
Pattern not commercially available
InstructionsThis quilt was donated to the charity Forward UK to be used for fundraising, probably by raffling. Contact them if you are interested in a chance to acquire this quilt.
Type of item: Functional
Style: Mod, Whimsical
Quilting cotton, poly batting, perle #8 thread. For the wall hanging, I also used glass beads and embroidery.
What was your inspiration?
I joined in an international block swap the other year, and wanted to try crazy quilted pieces for the blocks coming to me. We decided to theme the quilt around female sexuality, which shows up partly in the very stylised shapes used for the blocks (although some turned out to be more realistic than others!), partly in the colours used, and partly in the quilting motifs. The charity chosen, Forward UK, works to advance and safeguard the sexual and reproductive health of women and girls in Africa, so this was an appropriate theme. I called it Crazy Women as it's themed around women and it uses crazy piecing for the blocks. The title also challenges the traditional links made between female sexuality and mental illness.
When the blocks turned up, most of them were the sort of thing I'd envisaged, but a few quilters had gone for a slightly different approach. One fairly large block had much less contrast going on, and while the pattern fitted with the rest of the blocks, the low contrast didn't. That block became a matching cushion to go with the sofa quilt, which worked out beautifully. Another block had crazy quilting in the background and a big heart/vulva motif in the middle. That block became the heart of the quilt, and ended up inspiring a lot of the quilting motifs. A third block abandoned the crazy quilting idea in favour of a more literal approach, using a pixelated pattern. I turned that block into a wall hanging, and while the sofa quilt and cushion were intended to be used for fundraising, the wall hanging has gone to hang on the wall in the charity's offices.
The Yoni Quilt Art Challenge was a valuable source of inspiration when designing: http://www.quiltart.com/challenges/yoni/index.html
What are you most proud of?
Overcoming my embarrassment at the subject matter! I was rather coy and giggly about it at first, but by the end I was cheerfully sketching and stitching vulva motifs without a second thought. And it's very stylised, after all.
I found the pixelated block quite hard to work with, and had to spend quite a lot of time leaving it lying around to glance at, and looking at it from further away. It was very much worth the challenge, however, and I enjoyed learning to superimpose curves onto such a square-dominated design.
What advice would you give someone starting this project?
If you're doing a group quilt, be prepared for some of the blocks to turn out rather differently from how you'd imagined, and take that as a challenge.
If you put out a request for blocks of different size, you will need to calculate the sashing carefully using graph paper. I think I had to sew around a corner once or twice, which is easy enough with hand-piecing but I gather is more difficult for machine-piecing.